“Declan Jordan had a bubbly personality, always smiling,” Fr Conor McConville told a packed church at his funeral this morning.
Declan died suddenly last Sunday in a motorcycle accident near Dundrod aged just 48-years-old.
However it was a testament to his popularity that St Paul’s Church in Lurgan was full to capacity of his family and many many friends.
He ran Laganside Boarding Kennels near Magheralin and was known to many as a ‘dog whisperer’.
Fr McConville said: “Many will know him and his soulmate Nicci from the dog fraternity. He had very much a connection with animals and was very good to them and had a great rapport with them - so much so that he was known as The Dog Whisperer.”
Growing up in the close-knit Shankill area of Lurgan, Declan amassed many friends in the town plus through his frequent travels abroad - and was often described as having a ‘magnetic personality’.
The congregation was told about how kind-hearted and generous he was and always with a sense of humour. Fr McConville related a tale of his youth when he would come home to his mother and hand her all his wages but with a smile ask her for a ‘sub’.
“He had his own way of doing things,” said Fr McConville, telling the story of how he got a painting job with his brother Mark. “And before you knew it, he was running things,” he said, smiling.
He spoke of happy times such as late last year when the three brothers Mark, Conor and Declan went to the races in San Diego. “Somehow three bottles of water turned into three bottles of gin.”
“Declan was always on the go. He had a bubbly personality, always smiling. He was not a sad person. He was a happy person and made the most out of life.
“He had a great sense of humour. He was a good guy, a good soul, always wheeling and dealing,” said Fr McConville.
“And one of something was never enough. He had 19 dogs of his own as well as looking after others.”
An avid Manchester United fan, Declan will be known to many through sport, biking and having a pint in the Lurgan Glasgow Celtic Supporters Club.
Father to Ryan and grandfather to Charlotte, Declan was the son of the late Patrick and Angela Jordan and brother of Mark, Conor and Brenda.
The family have asked for no flowers but donations in lieu if desired to Almost Home Animal Rescue N.I. c/o Jack McLearnon & Son Funeral Directors, Lurgan.